More Than One High Point for Cubs Today
Jose Guevara bounced a two-run single back through the box past a drawn-in infield, driving-in what proved to be the winning run, as the EXST Cubs scored six runs in the last two innings to blow open a close game and defeat the EXST A’s 7-1 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa this morning.
Jesus Morelli extended his hitting streak to 19 games when he beat-out an 8th inning infield single (a dribbler to 3rd base), and RHP Chris Huseby showed no evidence of wildness, throwing two perfect 1-2-3 innings, striking out three (all swinging).
Cubs Player Personnel Director Oneri Fleita, Minor League Hitting Coordinator Dave Keller, and about a dozen Cub scouts were at Fitch Park today (and have been there for most of the week), working out high school and college players in preparation for next week’s Rule 4 Draft (AKA “First-Year Player Draft”). One of the players who was at Fitch Park showing his wares was invited to play in today’s game, and he made the most of his opportunity.
High Point U. OF Nate Roberts hit lead-off and played CF for six innings, slashing an RBI single to left to put the Cubs on the board in the 3rd, then stealing two bases, before making a two-out over-the-shoulder running catch in deep right-center with his back to the infield to save a run in the 5th.
After graduating from Richmond Burton HS, the Spring Grove, IL native spent his freshman year at Northwestern University, before transferring to Parkland JC. He was selected by the Tampa Rays Rays in last June’s draft but did not sign, instead opting to transfer to High Point University in High Point, NC, where he was named 2010 Big South Conference Player of the Year after hitting 416/573/746 with 19 HR and 69 RBI and 36 SB (3 CS) in just 59 games. With all that on his resume, Baseball America ranked Roberts as just the 28th best draft prospect in the State of North Carolina.
Here is today’s abridged box score (Cubs players only):
1a. Nate Roberts, CF: 1-3 (6-3, 1B, 6-4-3 GIDP, RBI, 2 SB)
1b. Kyung-Min Na, CF: 0-1 (6-3)
2. Alvaro Ramirez, DH #1: 1-4 (K, F-8, 1-U, 1B, R)
3. Jesus Morelli, RF: 1-4 (K, 4-3, 4-3, 1B, R)
4. Richard Jones, 1B: 2-4 (4-3, F-7, 1B, 2B, RBI, 2 R)
5a. Xavier Batista, DH #2: 1-2 (2B, 6-3)
5b. Wes Darvill, PH-DH: 1-1 (BB, 1B, R)
6a. Sergio Burruel, C: 1-1 (BB, 1B)
6b. Jose Guevara, C: 1-2 (1B, K, 2 RBI)
7. Arismendy Alcantara, SS: 0-1 (L-9 DP, 1-3 SH, BB, BB)
8. Pin-Chieh Chen, 2B: 0-3 (1-3, 4-2 FC, 4-6 FC, BB, RBI, SB)
9. George Matheus, 3B: 0-2 (BB, F-9, P-4, R)
10. Runey Davis, LF: 0-0 (2-U SH, BB, BB, R)
1. Chris Huseby – 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 2/1 GO/FO, 23 pitches (16 strikes)
2. Tarlandus Mitchell – 3.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 2 BB, 2 K, 6/1 GO/FO, 52 pitches (38 strikes)
3. Carlos Rojas – 1.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 3/0 GO/FO, 22 pitches (17 strikes)
4. Hector Mayora - 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/2 GO/FO, 19 pitches (12 strikes)
5. Alvaro Sosa - 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/FO, 25 strikes (14 strikes)
1. 3B George Matheus – E5 (dropped line drive allowed batter to reach base safely – did not score)
2. 3B George Matheus - E5 (two-base overthrow error at 1st base allowed batter to reach 2nd base – did not score)
3. SS Arismendy Alcantara - E6 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely - did not score)
CF Kyung-Min Na threw out runner 8-6-2 trying to score from 1st base on double to CF
WEATHER: Sunny and hot, with temperatures in the 90’s
The Cubs had a Camp Day yesterday, spending several hours taking BP, fielding practice, baserunning drills, PFP, and pick-off drills, before playing a nine-inning intrasquad game. The game was even more informal than the typical Cactus League Extended Spring Training game so it would be futile to try and make a box score out of it, but I can tell you that RHP (ex-SS & ex-LF) Dylan Johnston (2009 TJS rehab) got into his first game action of 2010, allowing two runs on three hits (two doubles and a triple) and a HBP in 1.1 IP, RHP Juan Yasser Serrano was extended to four innings, allowing four runs—but only one earned—on four hits, while retiring the last ten men he faced, and George Matheus had the big blow on offense, a bases-loaded triple off Serrano after a costly two-out error by 2nd baseman Arismendy Alcantara loaded the bases. In addition to Johnston and Serrano getting work, Austin Kirk threw four innings, Tzu-An Wang and Alvido Jimenez threw two innings a piece, and Danny Keefe, Andres Quezada, Jesse Ginley, and Jadel Mendez threw one inning each.
ESPN game tonight, btw.
Cardinal way #48
"negligent transmission of STDs"
Heyward getting the night off.
Grand Slammin' Sczcur in RF - La Stella batting 2nd
Twitterverse reporting that Heyward is dealing with a sore right wrist
Cardinal way #47
See ya on parrot chat
In what was probably the last start for RHSP Jeremy Null at EXST...
Intrasquad game this morning on Field #5 at Riverview Baseball Complex:
4.1 IP, 7 H, 3 R (3 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 HR, 2 WP, 1 GIDP, 5/4 GO/AO, 75 pitches (50 strikes)
Next stop is likely either South Bend or Myrtle Beach (TBD)
There does seem to be something funky about closers pitching in non-save situations -- they never seem to be as effective. But, to your point, there could not have been a save situation in that game, so why not use your best reliever?
Your thought: don't pitch Rondon at all, since a save can't happen in extra innings at home.
Maddon's thought: might as well pitch him now, because there's no later.
It looked like the baserunner might have screened Russell some though it's still a play he should have made.
I wasn't thrilled with the use of Rondon in that situation. In save situations opponents have a 77 OPS. In non-save situations it's a 116 OPS. We had other relievers for that spot we could have used.
I'm not sure if it's his normal swing but it's obvious he can hit and he's always hit for power just not HRs so if it is his normal swing there's something else going on.
This article from spring training said he was trying to pull the ball a lot more:
Oh, thanks. I guess I should actually look at the schedule. Yay, 3-game road trip!
Good call, indeed. This ought to be a good series.
Sorry to nit-pick -- but the games against the Nats this week are at home.
Can't remember a worse weather-start to a season. Yuck.
Basically Russell booted a slam dunk DP grounder letting a run score. But he drove in the tying run in 9th. Just not their day, Rondon notwithstanding.
Didn't see the game, but it sounded like the Cubs gave away 2 runs with poor fielding. Bummer.
Well, it's been a fun diet of Reds, Brewers and Braves, but now the Cubs have to play real teams in May (Pirates, Nationals, SF, Cards and Dodgers) -- hope we are all still smiling when we wake up on Memorial Day.
He does seem out of synch. His body seems to start forward, then his arms sort of try to catch up -- if that's his normal swing, he will never hit for power. It's an all-arms slasher swing, but the timing seems off.
He is currently slugging .256 -- I realize the weather has been bad, but that's epically bad. Currently 92nd out of 94 qualified NL batters. Yikes.